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PCABrewing

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Does anybody have an opinion on Great Western Maltsters 2-Row?
I see their 55lb price on More Beer and it is better than what NB is offering.
I typically use Rahr, Breiss, Simpson or Crisp but I want to broaden the supplier list a bit. How is More Beer on shipping grain, is it fresh?

Any experiences, good or bad are encouraged.
 

bracconiere

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did you punch in shipping?

i like great western? but now that malt is $2/lb can't really afford to buy malt anymore...
 
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PCABrewing

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did you punch in shipping?

i like great western? but now that malt is $2/lb can't really afford to buy malt anymore...
I abandoned the site at that point. Some sites allow you to get a shipping estimate before entering your payment data, More Beer doesn't.
I'll probably check back later.
Shipping 55 lbs VS driving to Northern Brewer and picking up a different brand might even out the deal.
NB says they ship free over $49.
 
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PCABrewing

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morebeer has it over $59, but whole sacks don't qualify.

and yeah, i never find out shipping if they want more then my zip code....
So what base malt do you use mostly?
I have been using Rahr 2-row and Crisp Maris Otter mostly.
 

bracconiere

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So what base malt do you use mostly?
I have been using Rahr 2-row and Crisp Maris Otter mostly.

i've been malting my own since 2016, but when i did buy it, i liked breiss & great western. i didn't like viking, and never tried rahr, or marris otter....

i just chimed in you compared the WITH shipping total between NB & MoreBeer....a lot of people order 10lb bags, and get the free shipping, and it does bring the total cost down...
 

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It looks like sacks of malt ship free from NB. Just checking Rahr 2-row, it's 79.99 for 55 lbs. Midwest is cheaper--$54.99, but shipping puts the overall cost way above that of NB. I'm local to both stores, and Midwest's shipping to bring it 20 miles to my house is about $37. The rates go way up the farther it ships.

I've used Great Western 2-row a few times. I thought it was good, though I've never done a side-by-side comparing it to other maltsters. No complaints. I've ordered a lot of grain from Morebeer the past few years, and never had any that seemed stale. I think they turn over inventory fairly fast. I rarely buy by the sack, as I don't go through it fast enough. I do like Morebeer's 10lb bags of grain, and those are included in free shipping if the order is >$59. You could check the cost of getting five 10lb. bags from Morebeer with the free shipping and see how it compares to grain by the sack from elsewhere.

Open several browser tabs and put items in carts for different companies, see how it all compares.
 

bracconiere

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Open several browser tabs and put items in carts for different companies, see how it all compares.

unfortanetly, he said morebeer wants payment info before even giving a shipping cost. i have an account so never noticed that, but f that! :mug:
 

MaxStout

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unfortanetly, he said morebeer wants payment info before even giving a shipping cost. i have an account so never noticed that, but f that! :mug:
If ordering in 10lb bags and the total order is >$59, no shipping.

But yeah, pet peeve that some vendors require a bunch of personal info before giving shipping estimates.
 

bracconiere

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for the record i just checked morebeer to confirm they need payment info, and there was a box above the cart to enter a zip code, got one, $43 to me, and $~50 for the sack.....


i didn't login....
 

sibelman

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I've been happily using Great Western (organic!) base 2-row malt for years, but it's stocked by my LHBS so shipping is me driving across town. 😊 Yes, the price has been rising. 😥
 

bracconiere

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Yes, the price has been rising.

that's an understatement! year and half, 2 years ago, base malt was 79 cents/lb...

cost me $67 to get 60lbs great western base to my door just march of last year...now apparently it's close to $100.

glad a 50lb bag of barley is still $13 at the feed store ;)....
 
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sibelman

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that's an understatement! year and half, 2 years ago, base malt was 79 cents/lb...

cost me $67 to get 60lbs great western base to my door just march of last year...now apparently it's close to $100.

glad a 50lb bag of barley is still $13 at the feed store ;)....
I really admire your home malting operation, and not only for economy reasons. The dryer saga was especially inspiring - closer to the dirt! Kinda weird that barley price stays the same while malt price goes through the roof. wtf?
 

bracconiere

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I really admire your home malting operation, and not only for economy reasons. The dryer saga was especially inspiring - closer to the dirt! Kinda weird that barley price stays the same while malt price goes through the roof. wtf?

not sure if that's the case, the feed store has been swapping brands a lot. probably trying not to have raise the price.... :( :mug:

edit: but even then, probably not more then a buck or two a bag!
 

IslandLizard

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If ordering in 10lb bags and the total order is >$59, no shipping.
Let me emphasize: That is the most important part of ordering grain at MoreBeer! ^
To get "free" malt shipping you can't order whole sacks there. Instead, you need to order in smaller bags, 10# for the best price break, as many as you want, and exceed $59 for your total order (before tax and shipping calculations).

Alternatively, talk to your LHBS owner. They may sell you a sack of exactly what you want, at a price that's overall better or within a few bucks. It's worth asking, what could you lose?

For example we used to have group grain buys to save $$ and get a selection of malts that aren't available locally. But now, I can order pretty much any malt from my LHBS, while the price difference with a group buy has become much smaller. Also, I don't have to wait for the group order to fill (which has been taking longer and longer) plus driving to DC and back on a Saturday morning.
Also supports your Local HBS!

But yeah, pet peeve that some vendors require a bunch of personal info before giving shipping estimates.
Same pet peeve here. But... on check-out pages Google fills in all my details, as soon as I type in my name. That's before committing to the order.
 

bracconiere

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Another idea, though I've never done it myself...build rapport with a local brewer and ask if you could piggyback a sack or two with their next order.

i did it for a few years, it was great! (but it would have to be a 'brewpub'. not a brewery, i think they don't like thinking eveyone isn't their worshiper.....
 

ba-brewer

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I like Great Western regular 2row and I also like their califonia select 2row too, it a little lighter and cleaner in flavor.

Rahr's 2row and their pilsner malt has a raw cereal flavor to me that I dont care for. I does fade some with time but still get a little.

More beer is my normal LHBS and they have quarterly 15% off sales at the local stores so I stock up a sack or two when they do. Time are tough for the smaller LHBS so I will buy a bucket of base grain at the per pound price from time to time too. I figure that is a good way to put money directly in their pockets.
 

bracconiere

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I like Great Western regular 2row and I also like their califonia select 2row too, it a little lighter and cleaner in flavor.

Rahr's 2row and their pilsner malt has a raw cereal flavor to me that I dont care for. I does fade some with time but still get a little.

More beer is my normal LHBS and they have quarterly 15% off sales at the local stores so I stock up a sack or two when they do. Time are tough for the smaller LHBS so I will buy a bucket of base grain at the per pound price from time to time too. I figure that is a good way to put money directly in their pockets.
are you saying rahr is green grainy, or cooked grainy?

(and i remember when MoreBeer was my LDHBS, have a friend fill up the car or truck with 8-9 bags of base malt! ;))
 

MaxStout

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I like Great Western regular 2row and I also like their califonia select 2row too, it a little lighter and cleaner in flavor.

Rahr's 2row and their pilsner malt has a raw cereal flavor to me that I dont care for. I does fade some with time but still get a little.

More beer is my normal LHBS and they have quarterly 15% off sales at the local stores so I stock up a sack or two when they do. Time are tough for the smaller LHBS so I will buy a bucket of base grain at the per pound price from time to time too. I figure that is a good way to put money directly in their pockets.
I have a batch of SMaSH Kolsch I brewed with Rahr North Star Pilsner. Haven't noticed graininess, but might have to drink another to see if it's there. :inbottle:
 

bracconiere

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hey @PCABrewing any of this being helpful? was the only reason you were interested in great western the price?

i love grainy beer, so i'm curious if you've noticed it more with rahr also? like ba said.
 

ba-brewer

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I have a batch of SMaSH Kolsch I brewed with Rahr North Star Pilsner. Haven't noticed graininess, but might have to drink another to see if it's there. :inbottle:
It was not that version of of their pilsner so dont know about that one, but reading the description I would not be surprised if it did. With the lower level of modification that seems like an interesting malt.
 

Nate R

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Fwiw...
Usually shipping varies widely based on where you live.
William's Brewing can be a great deal on sacks if you live in Nor Cal.

You gotta shop around!

But, morebeer sells a LOT of grain wholesale to professional brewers, too. Usually there stock is pretty fresh. I've gotten lots of sacks from there.

If you spend some time looking, you can find good deals. What state do you live in, @PCABrewing
 
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PCABrewing

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unfortanetly, he said morebeer wants payment info before even giving a shipping cost. i have an account so never noticed that, but f that! :mug:
Well I didn't pursue it past the address screen, but the next screen was payment and I didn't want to go that far at the time.
But as others have chimed in, the price with shipping will probably come close to the same.
 
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PCABrewing

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Kinda weird that barley price stays the same while malt price goes through the roof. wtf?
Additional pockets that need filling in the Malt cycle of life. Malting itself is a pretty big piece of it I'm sure.
 
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PCABrewing

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If you spend some time looking, you can find good deals. What state do you live in, @PCABrewing
I'm close to Milwaukee, so I have pretty good options on LHBS and major outlets.
I have bought equipment through MoreBeer so I am comfortable with them as a vendor.
I did want input on Great Western malt initially. I know they are big, but unsure the homebrew markets opinion of them. That is why I started this thread.
I welcome any other good base malt recommendations.
 

Nate R

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Yeah sorry to hijack! Lol.
I lile great western. Fair prices. Also US made i think. Maybe start with a basic 2-row receipie and see how you like it?
 

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There's nothing wrong with Great Western 2-row, nothing special about it either. So it depends what you want make. If I'm using generic 2 row, I don't see any difference between the different large North American maltsters.
 

grampamark

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Here’s a point of reference (and the reason we haven’t grown malt barley on our farm for the last 5 years).
1E17046B-4D65-4315-AE3D-1804BB446F6F.jpeg

That’s Wednesday’s closing market price for malt and feed barley at the nearest grain elevator to our farm. The prices are quoted per hundred pounds (abbreviated cwt). So, malt, per pound, is $0.0775. Note that feed barley is only $0.75/cwt less than malt. The “N/D” column indicates November/December delivery. The next column to the right (not in the picture) is empty, so no set price beyond next month.

The standard “test weight” (the assumed weight per bushel for purposes of trade) for barley is 48 lbs. So, a cwt of barley contains 2.08 bushels. $7.75 / 2.08 = $3.73 / bushel. Spring wheat, our principal crop is currently $10.00 / bushel (wheat is traded by the bushel; don’t ask). In an average year we can produce around 40 bushels of wheat per acre; at current prices that’s $400 / acre. Barley will average closer to 60 bushels / acre, but at $3.73 / bushel that’s only $223 / acre. Production costs are similar for both crops. One doesn’t need to be a Nobel-worthy economist to figure that one out.

Current malt prices, at the HB level, for base malts are anywhere from $1.50-2.00 / lb. So, retail malt prices are close to 20X what the grower receives. Transportation, storage, processing, packaging, more storage, more transportation, more storage, and, finally, more transportation before that sack of malt arrives at your door. There’s a lot of middlemen in the supply chain.

Edited to correct the price/lb of malt. Left out a “0”.
 
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lurker18

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I really admire your home malting operation, and not only for economy reasons. The dryer saga was especially inspiring - closer to the dirt! Kinda weird that barley price stays the same while malt price goes through the roof. wtf?
Barley prices definitely have not stayed the same. Harvest 2020 we were buying selected malt barley from the producers for $5.50/bushel. Harvest 2021 we are buying barley from the producers at $11.50/bushel right now, and there is aprox. 50% less of it to buy due to the terrible growing season. Add to the all the processing costs have gone way up, natural gas, transportation, the magic supply chain issues, etc. the cost for malt to the consumer has to go up.

I am a malt selector, and have been doing this for about 10 years now, and this is by far the worst year I have ever been involved with in buying quality barley. Malt houses are struggling to purchase the raw products, are working with barley that they normally would not touch for malting, and are doing a pretty good job of making the final product. I can't see prices coming down anytime soon, at least until next harvest assuming we get back to "normal" weather trends and normal harvest volumes and quality, but just as a heads up, our company has just sold next years new crop at this same prices as this years crop, so I assume the maltsters are preparing for an equally challenging 2022 -2023, keeping the price of malt up there for at least another year.

Those who would like to see the prices go down better be doing a rain dance, putting all their wishes that COVID f*cks off, and transportation costs level out.
 
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